Library Cafe, located only 30 minutes outside New York City in Farmingdale, Long Island, boasts a ton of deliciously elevated pub fare for the masses to enjoy.
As I am a native Long Islander, it is crucial for me to make Manhattanites realize that there is some amazing food outside of The Big Apple, and the commute to yumminess is only a quick train ride away.
This includes Library Cafe, which is about a 30 minute commute on the LIRR (Long Island Railroad) out of Penn Station and is literally a $3 cab ride from the Farmingdale train station, making commuting an absolute breeze. This space has been an institution in this bustling area of Nassau County, as it has been open for well over a decade which is a major accomplishment in any sort of restaurant setting.
Library Cafe is a no musk, no fuss kind of shindig. Even though I happen to have a soft spot for all of these newly designed, ultra-futuristic culinary wonderments that are inhabiting New York City, I still happen to enjoy a casual pub type setting where the food is pretty much par for the course in terms of knowing what you are going to get. The thing is, they deliver on items that would be considered basic at other establishments as their bar type of food is elevated in a ton of different ways.
Even before I got there I knew that it was going to be a great night ahead as Library Cafe is part of the Lessing’s Hospitality Group, which has a ton of fabulous restaurants in its Rolodex such as eastern Long Island hotspot Mirabelle’s, which we reviewed in the summer of 2017.
The items that I was most impressed by happened to be their shareable dishes, otherwise known as appetizers. I am a sucker for a good pretzel, and their Artisan Bavarian Pretzel with smoked gouda, onion fondue and a beer cheese sauce was simply superb. The pretzel itself was so warm and doughy, with the cheese sauce providing such a great dipping element to the already yummy dish.
Two of their main courses were also pretty scrumptious, as their Chicken Bruschetta with asiago cheese, tomato basil kalamata olive bruschetta, rocket arugula salad and aged balsamic and their Jumbo Shrimp Pasta with California spinach, cherry tomatoes, roasted red pepper cream and parmesan reggiano really filled us up in all the right ways.
For one, I am a huge fan of Chicken Bruschetta, as there is always a fresh element to this classic Italian dish. This item was a bit more health conscious than the others, as you can choose to have it grilled as opposed to pan fried, but it still sucked in a ton of flavor with all of its supporting ingredients that came with. The pasta was much heavier, however that didn’t bother me at all as the combination of the shrimp with the spinach and sauce all worked really well together and warmed me up on such a cold night.
If you ever find yourself in Long Island and want to experience a fabulous place to eat, relax, and watch the game, then Library Cafe is definitely for you. More info here.